Paranoid Personality Disorder
Personality disorders are mental health disorders that are defined by established and enduring patterns of behaviour and thinking that interfere with your ability to function and maintain healthy relationships, and in general, impact your life negatively.
There are 10 personality disorders that are divided into 3 clusters:
- Cluster A: Odd or abnormal behaviour
- Cluster B: Dramatic or emotional behaviour
- Cluster C: Anxious or fearful behaviour
Paranoid personality disorder is categorized under Cluster C (anxious or fearful behaviour) and is characterized primarily by having an extreme distrust of all people. It is different from the paranoid tendencies of someone with schizophrenia or schizotypal personality disorder in that the paranoia does not coexist with or seem to be caused by hallucinations, fantasies, or delusions.
Symptoms & signs of paranoid personality disorder include:
- Consistently holding grudges
- Described as jealous or possessive
- Suspicious of the sexual infidelity of a loved one
- Extreme sensitivity to criticism or minor slights
- Misunderstanding others’ friendly actions to be hostile
When is it time to get help?
Like many other mental health and personality disorders, people with paranoid personality disorder don’t always see that they have a problem – they may believe the problem is with other people! However, if you have this personality disorder, then you are likely finding it very difficult to maintain healthy relationships, or possibly even interact with others. As a result, you may be experiencing anxiety, depression, or stress.
If you find these symptoms to be affecting you, and especially if you’ve been told by others that you may have a “problem”, then you would likely benefit from obtaining some support.
Paranoid personality disorder treatment methods
Treatment methods that may be effective in treating paranoid personality disorder include:
- Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based approach to treatment that focuses on how people’s thoughts, emotions, and beliefs influence their behaviour and how they perceive themselves.
- Psychotherapy is a broad term that encompasses numerous styles of therapy and uses verbal or nonverbal communication with a client to help treat psychiatric problems, behavioral issues, personality disorders, and various other types of emotional distress. This form of personal counselling is based on an interpersonal relationship, as opposed to the alternative chemical or physical forms of therapy.
- Psychodynamic therapy’s core principle is that the unconscious mind harbours deep-rooted feelings and memories, which affects behaviour. Psychodynamic therapists work within this model by attempting to maintain more of an equal relationship with their client while also adopting the attitude of unconditional acceptance and trust.
- Reality therapy generally believes that individuals choose their behaviour and as a result, are responsible for not only what they are doing, but also how they think and feel. Clients develop the psychological strength to evaluate their own behaviour and acquire more effective behaviour with the support of a warm and accepting counselling environment.
- To choose the right combination of treatments, an assessment will first be done. Together with your therapist, you’ll find the treatment method that best suits your unique personality and circumstances.
What will I get out of treatment with Insight Psychological?
By meeting with a therapist, you can learn to manage your paranoid personality disorder. You will find ways to manage symptoms and understand the impact this disorder has on you and your loved ones and find ways to understand your emotions and fears, and to have healthier relationships with others. We have knowledgeable and non-judgmental therapists who can support you. Please call us today!